Spring Chicken Roasted with Asparagus and Green Olives
This herbed spring chicken roasted with asparagus and green olives is a deliciously fresh take on roast chicken. It takes a little time, but most of the work happens in the oven. The result? Melt-in-your-mouth tender, juicy chicken with a gorgeous golden crispy skin!
When it comes to roasts, we tend to think of winter comfort food, with all the trimmings. And while it’s delicious, it can also feel heavy and even a little stodgy. Not to mention the seemingly endless prep time and roasting time.
Exactly what none of us feel like in the Spring.
Winner Winner, Spring Chicken Dinner
The great thing about this spring chicken dish is that while the prep takes around 15 minutes, the rest of the magic happens in the oven. It’s an absolutely tender, juicy take on a classic – but lighter. It also makes the most of the gorgeous fresh produce that we have available at this time of year.
The optional fresh green herb sauce pulls all the flavours together and lightens things up. You can either make your own with chopped soft green herbs in olive oil, or you can use store bought Basil Pesto.
(I won’t tell, if you don’t)
If You’re Extra
So, this step is entirely optional, and you can skip it if you want or if you simply don’t have the time. But it’s what separates the mere “hmmm” from the “OMG!!!This is amazing!!!”
And it’s a simple trick I learned while doing my chef training.
Are you paying attention?
Salt the chicken inside and out, and leave the chicken in the fridge, uncovered, overnight. This draws out the moisture from the skin and really dries out the skin. It’s this clever little step that ensures the chicken skin is golden, delicious and extra crispy.
It also helps to season the chicken to the bone, making it more flavourful.
What’s the Fuss About Asparagus?
These delightful springtime vegetables taste amazing and are packed with the good stuff. Like vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin K, folate and potassium. Asparagus also contains glutathione which is a powerful detoxifying compound that helps remove nasties like carcinogens and free radicals from your body. Oh, and it contains a chemical called asparagine that helps the body flush excess waste from the kidneys.
What a Shallot I’ve Got
Shallots, also known as eschalots or French shallots, are relatives of the onion family, but not quite onions. They grow in clusters underground and each shallot is covered in a copper coloured skin.
Their taste is sweeter and mellower than the sharper, more pungent taste of their onion cousins. Originating in the 11th century, they made their way from the port of Ashkelon and spread throughout the world. They arrived in France, and the rest is history, so to speak. They’re a much-loved ingredient and are still a pivotal element of French cuisine.
In this recipe, we’re leaving the skins on to protect the delicate flesh, halving them and creating a ‘bed’ for the spring chicken to rest on. Right before serving, we’ll discard the skin and enjoy the deliciously gooey shallots with garlic, asparagus, cherry tomatoes and green olives.
Remember to choose shallots that are firm and that feel heavy for their size. Avoid the ones that have gone soft and the ones that have sprouted – they’ll have a bitter taste.
Rate This Spring Chicken
As always, if you try this spring chicken recipe let us know how it goes! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag your photo #theculinarycartel on Instagram so we can see what you come up with.
You can also view the recipe video here
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I make this gluten-free?
This dish is gluten free! Enjoy!
Why use butter and olive oil?
So you can enjoy the best of both worlds. Butter is smooth, creamy and brings a richness to the taste. Olive oil has a unique flavour and fruity aroma and together they enhance the flavour of your spring chicken. By combining the olive oil and butter, you’re also raising the smoking point, so it can withstand a higher temperature than butter would alone.